Tuesday 15 May 2018

The Great Dragon Cannon of Cathay.

This week I have converted and painted another Oriental artillery piece, this time from the mainland: Imperial Cathay.

In older editions of Warhammer Fantasy Battle Imperial Cathay was a large empire to the far east of the Old World, analogous with China in our history and world. What Warhammer background there was had a many elements of Chinese culture to them, especially concrening Oriental Dragons. Below is a picture of a 'Dragon Cannon' from 19th Century China, as often during the Ming and Qing periods of Chinese history larger cannons had barrels cast in the shapes of Dragons or sometimes Tigers.

With this in mind I decided to convert a Dragon cannon for my occasional Oldhammer Cathay army project which I am collecting. I had a spare Oriental Dragon head from Tom Meier's Citadel/Ral Partha DG1 Oriental Dragon (also know, and re-released by Ral Partha USA as the Celestial Dragon). Looking around for a suitably impressive cannon I settled on the MM13 Marauder Dwarf Seige Gun, with it's ornated carriage and wheels, it seemed the best option.

Converting it was simple, I just stuck the head on the barrel! To go with the cannon I added two crew (I still require a third): a pre-slotta C05 Oriental Hero 'Wizard', and a slotta based OH5 Oriental Champion 'Lang' (aka 'Sohei'). The pre-slotta miniature looks very Chinese, and fits nicely. The slotta miniature seems to be a mix of Japanese and Chinese elements, with armour which is similar to both Japanese Haramaki armour and Chinese style of Lamellar armour.

Enjoy :)
19th Century Chinese Dragon Cannon.
 Dragon Cannon of Cathay.
I went for a more darker, older looking colour for the bronze to suggest an ancient cannon, rather than a bright looking gold colour.
 Front view (sorry about the blurring!).
Left side.
 Right side.
 Top view.
 A more rear view.
Pre-slotta  C05 Oriental Hero.
To me he looks very much like a Chinese Mandarin/Offical.
 Rear view, complete with 'pig-tail'.
 OH5 Oriental Champion.
I have painted his armour as Lamellar armour in a style similar to some Medieval Chinese solders. 
Rear view.

I am not sure what my next update will be on. I really do need to update on the army project which I have been working on for a while. The Cathay army is part of a group of 3,000 point armies I am working on for the nations and races of the Oldhammer era Warhammer World setting. It's a huge project. The 'Eastern armies' section alone has seven armies; Nippon, Cathay; Ind; Araby; Kislev/Dolgan; Empire of the Hobgobla Khan; and Undead Nipponese.


  1. What a great looking conversion Lee, and very well painted to. Love visiting your blog seeing all the old nostalgic pieces being used to there max

    1. Thank you. I am slowly building a Cathay army using old 1980's Citadel miniatures. The idea of the Dragon Cannon came to me as I was looking through Google and thinking about what should be in the army.
      Glad you are enjoying the blog. :)